The Pienta lab utilizes the science of ecology to understand cancer and to design new therapeutic strategies.  Ecosystems are considered to be a unit that includes the organisms in a given area (the community) interacting with their physical environment. Ecosystems do not exist independently, but interact in a complex web of relationships, making up the biosphere.   As humans, we live in the biosphere of earth.  Cancer cells as a species exist in a complex relationship with the other normal cells of a tissue in the ecosystem of the organ it arises from, within the biosphere of the patient.  

Cancer cells and host cells continually interact in a dynamic fashion, refashioning the tumor microenvironment and ultimately, affecting patient health.

Cancer cells and host cells continually interact in a dynamic fashion, refashioning the tumor microenvironment and ultimately, affecting patient health.